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Cover of the Winter 2009 issue


VOL. 35, NO. 2







Let us know if you and your alma mater are mentioned in the news—we’ll highlight it here. If you’re being interviewed, don’t forget to mention that you’re a graduate of the UW-Madison College of Engineering! And as always, tell us what you’re up to.

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Alumni news

Biomedical Engineering

A postdoctoral student at Rice University, Ronke Olabisi (PhD ‘05) was among four young investigators named National Space Biomedical Research Institute postdoctoral fellows. Established by NASA, the two-year program will enable Olabisi to manage a space-related biomedical research project while continuing to learn from an experienced faculty mentor. As part of the institute musculoskeletal alterations team, she will lead the project, “Bone formation through biomineralization and bioengineering.”

Chemical and Biological Engineering

University of Delaware Gore Professor of Chemical Engineering Abraham Lenhoff (MS ‘79, PhD ‘84) will receive the 2009 American Chemical Society (ACS) Award in Separations Science and Technology. He will receive the award at the ACS spring 2009 national meeting and exposition. Lenhoff’s separations research focuses on protein separation, which has applications in the pharmaceutical and biomedical industries. Lenhoff currently is principal investigator on a five-year, $10.4 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to study membrane protein production and characterization.

A renewable energy design and development startup company head­quartered in Boise, Idaho, M2E Power Inc. named Eric Apfelbach (BS ‘84) president and chief executive officer. Apfelbach will lead the company through future development stages, including commercializing M2E products. Prior to joining the company, Apfelbach was president and CEO of UW-Madison spinoff company Virent Energy Systems. News of his new position appeared on

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Construction Co. Vice President of Operations Brian Aebly (BS ‘95) was among several construction industry professionals Wisconsin Builder magazine cited as 2008 newsmakers of the year. The magazine named Aebly Project Manager of the Year for his role in quickly building two crossover lanes on Wisconsin Interstate 94 after flooding closed westbound lanes between Milwaukee and Madison. The magazine featured Aebly in its November 2008 issue.

After three years with a consulting firm, Randy Lund (BS ‘85) restarted his sole proprietorship consulting practice, Lund Engineering, in August 2008. He has more than 20 years experience in design, construction and surveying engineering and is licensed in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan, Illinois and Iowa. He is located in northern Wisconsin in Bayfield County.

Valarie King-Bailey (BS ’82) is featured in a video series, “Women to Watch, on King-Bailey, who was the first black female to graduate from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, credits her UW-Madison education for changing her life. She founded OnShore Technology group in 2004 and in 2008 received a distinguished achievement award from the College of Engineering. View the video at

Global architectural, engineering, planning and design firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill promoted Bobby Vaziri (BS ‘81, MS ‘83) to associate. He works in structural engineering in the firm’s San Francisco office.

At an October 23, 2008, ceremony in Baltimore, Maryland, Mark Giesfeldt (BS ‘78) received the Association of State and Territorial Solid Waste Management Officials Lifetime Achievement Award. The award honors Giesfeldt’s work with the organization, state programs and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to clean up and reuse contaminated properties. He is director of the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Remediation and Redevelopment Bureau.

Electrical and Computer Engineering

A global leader in mobile device management, InnoPath Software has appointed Adrian Chan (BS ‘84, MS ‘85) vice president of engineering. He is responsible for all phases of server and client product development, from program inception through final handoff to the customer. Before joining InnoPath, Chan held executive engineering management roles at Bubble Motion, Instant802 Networks and BEA. News of his new position appeared on

Engineering Physics

Randy Dahmen (BS ’85, MS ’86) was one of three finalists for the U.S. Department of Energy 2008 Jeffery A. Johnson Award for Excellence in the Advancement of Building Energy Codes and Performance. Dahmen is a consulting engineer for the Wisconsin Department of Commerce Division of Safety & Buildings.

The Foundation for the Advancement of Outstanding Scholarship presented National Cheng Kung University (Taiwan) Physics Professor Ker-Chung Shaing (MS ‘78, PhD ‘80) the 2008 Outstanding Scholar Award. Shaing, who has authored more than 120 academic papers, was a senior scientist in engineering physics at UW-Madison from 2001 to 2007. His research interests include fusion plasma physics and nuclear engineering, and in particular, plasma transport theory. News of Shaing’s award appeared on

Materials Science and Engineering

Virginia Tech Engineering Education Assistant Professor Maura Borrego (BS ‘98) received a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers for developing methods that will better prepare faculty and graduate students for interdisciplinary research. The award is the first presented to an engineer in the area of engineering education research. Borrego, who joined the Virginia Tech faculty in spring 2005, developed and teaches three graduate courses in engineering education assessment and research methods and has received a Virginia Tech certificate of teaching excellence.

UW-Madison named John A. Krogman (MS ‘84) chief operating officer of the Division of Information Technology and associate chief information officer (CIO). He oversees 800 staff members and a budget of $70 million. Previously, he was associate vice chancellor of information services, CIO and director of the library at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville.

Mechanical Engineering

Song Zhu (PhD ‘97) is among 16 lawyers the global firm Squire, Sanders & Dempsey LLP has elected to partnership. Zhu works out of the firm’s Palo Alto and San Francisco offices. He is a registered patent attorney who handles intellectual property matters in the United States and throughout the world. His expertise encompasses a variety of technol­ogies, including telecommunications, semiconductor manufacturing, computer software, automotive systems and medical devices.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) named Said I. Abdel-Khalik (MS ‘71, PhD ‘73) vice chairman of its Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards. The committee independently advises the NRC on the safety aspects of nuclear facilities and the adequacy of safety standards. Formerly a UW-Madison nuclear engineering professor, Abdel-Khalik is the Southern Nuclear Distinguished Professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology. News of his appointment appeared on

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